Thinking back, Zack Bradley sees his junior year on the Catasauqua football team as it were yesterday.
It was then that Bradley started at quarterback and began to rewrite the Roughies and Colonial League record book as well as leading his team to one of the most prolific two-year runs in school history.
During that year, Bradley threw for over 2,100 yards and 31 touchdowns, the first step for more than 5,000 passing yards and 74 touchdowns in his career.
Caught up in the moment with his team, Rod Berger believes he can pitch for quite some time.
After he enjoyed a successful season with the varsity team, Berger was also one of the main reasons the Catasauqua entry in the Lehigh Valley Connie Mack League (LVCM) made to the state tournament. The Roughies dropped a 4-2 decision to Hellertown in the LVCM playoffs, but they qualified for the state tournament with a third-place regular season finish.
It was a rainy, summer day in 1990 and Eric Snyder recalled writing the letter that began Catty’s annual Tournament of Champions (ToC), which has withstood the test of time.
“I remember putting together the letter about having the tournament,” stated Snyder, the longtime tournament director and high school boys’ basketball coach. “I thought it could be a good idea and that it could work.
“The only factor that didn’t work was rotating the site of the tournament every year.”
For the Catasauqua Connie Mack team, it was an ending that wasn’t fitting.
The Roughies had a memorable season come to an abrupt halt on the fifth day of the double-elimination Connie Mack State Tournament at Limeport Stadium Tuesday night.
Catty dropped a 7-1 decision to Warrington of the Bux-Mont League, a team that was seeded first in their league with an regular season 18-2 record.
The defeat gave the Roughies an overall 17-8 mark, a tremendous turnaround from a 2-18 season last year.
Entering the state Connie Mack Tournament for the first time since 2012, Catasauqua was trying to keep an even keel mixed with plenty of motivation.
“We have seen all of the teams from our league and we’re going out there to have some fun,” said head coach Jim Kober before the start of states. “We just have to go out and play ball like we have all season. I think our guys will respond.”
Nate Pontician figured it would be a different year. It was not only his senior year, but also a year in which he experienced some shifts in his athletic career.
As he has over the years, Pontician handled everything in stride and went about it with his workmanlike approach.
“I knew it was my last year and I tried not to think about it that much,” he said. “But I knew I would have fun doing it. I played a new sport and I’m really glad that I did it. It was one of the experiences this year that I won’t forget and it was a lot different than any other year.”
During her time at Catasauqua, Quinn Bachman always wanted to give back to her programs and her teammates.
She completed a stellar senior season and also a solid four-year career with the Roughies. Bachman’s senior seasons in field hockey, basketball and track helped earn her the Catasauqua Press Female Athlete of the Year Award.
As always, Bachman was more concerned about the whole instead of the part.
When she looked back at a career that rewrote parts of the Catasauqua and state record books, Hannah Edwards didn’t quite envision it happening.
“I can’t say that I thought this would happen when I began high school,” said Edwards. “I started my freshman year wanting to be the best player that I could be. I am just thankful to all of my coaches and teammates for making these four years special in many ways.
“But if someone told me that I would be a 10-time All-American once I finished high school, I would tell that person that they are crazy.”
Catasauqua’s girls’ basketball program appears ready to take the next step.
The Roughies will conclude their summer league play this weekend at SportsFest after they completed their season in the Catty League. They were eliminated by Jim Thorpe in the opening round of the playoffs.
However, the ripple effects of the summer season easily could be felt during the regular season.
In 2001, Anthony Recker left Catasauqua High School after a stellar four-year career and headed to Alvernia College to continue his baseball career.
Four years later, Recker began a well-traveled professional career that started as Oakland’s 18th pick in the 2005 draft. So far, Recker has experienced a busy docket at both the minor and major league levels, spanning over 13 teams in five different organizations.
Recently, he made his closest stop to home, just a few miles away.